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Among the top 5 worst movies I've ever seen!
on 6 February 2012
Now let me be clear, I enjoy a lot of low budget movies. In fact, among my guilty pleasures I count Dungeons and Dragons 2 and Beastmaster 3, and I genuinely enjoyed The Midnight Chronicles for an interesting story and take on the fantasy genre. I can even watch In The Name Of The King every now and again and find things to enjoy about it. So understand that I'm not some moron trying to compare Tales of An Ancient Empire to Gladiator or Kingdom of Heaven and complaining that it doesn't measure up, but believe me when I say that Bloodrayne out performs this movie.
This movie's only plus is Kevin Sorbo but unfortunately he is not a saving grace for it. That's not to say that HE isn't good. The great thing about Mr Sorbo is that he has charisma and you can tell he enjoys his work, which always leaves you with a bit of a smile. Unfortunately, the movie was a third to nearly halfway through before he showed up.
Watching this mess, I can't honestly blame the actors - even though many give less than sub-par performances - most seem to be actually trying to take their jobs and lines seriously. Saidly though, the lines let them down. The cinematography lets them down. The direction, editing and the same thirty-second sample of guitar music repeated so regularly that it ceases being the only cool thing in this movie before Sorbo even shows up... let them down. The entire film has that feeling of a bad piece of fanfiction written by someone under the age of twelve, or one of a hundred Star Wars prequels shot by fans wearing big coats for cloaks while they slow-fight with plastic lightsabers in the trees behind their house - you can feel the childlike silliness, as though it was put together by someone who really didn't know what they were doing.
Text pops up every 15-20 minutes to try to tell you that a movie written as a single narrative is actually several different interconnected tales. Unsure what I mean? Imagine your favourite movie, and imagine that every 15minutes the screen goes black and text appears saying for example: "Tale 7 - Ripley has another nightmare about aliens", "Tale 9 - The Marines wake up from stasis", "Tale 12 - the aliens are angry", "Tale 14 - Hudson won't stop whining". It even starts with this text, telling us there are going to be 27 of these tales - and words a sentence so badly that it leaves it meaning abosultely nothing at all - but worse still is when you get to the end and you realise that HOLY CRAP! all the bloody tales aren't even here! They didn't even finish the movie, and instead they've filmed some terrible looking shots of their characters standing around or play-fighting as pretend footage from the next part to try and "tease" us!
Look, there are movies I like, love, don't like and others I despise but within those there are movies that I can easily ignore bad editing or bad cinematography if the heart is there or the actors drawn you in or the story is interesting - Hell! Watching the Midnight Chronicles you can plainly see safety pins holding the actors hoods the way the director wanted them, and at times it's painfully clear that those aren't real walls around them, but wood painted to look like the sides of houses and not painted well - but the story is interesting and some of the actors give intriguing and noteworthy performances even despite their surroundings. It certainly doesn't have the perfect budget (though you can see they spent a fair whack in places, and quite a bit more in others) but it has the heart where it counts.
Unfortunately, everything that this movie has, works against it. And even Sorbo's notable charisma couldn't save it.
Oh, and the vampire fangs they use look SO bad. My Halloween fangs looked miles better than those - when I was twelve! I can't fathom how they could make the movie ones look THAT bad! The actors are actually having to open their mouths wide to try and talk AROUND them. Some movies are so bad they're good.... this is just bad.